What Do Your Dreams Really Mean?


Drawing by Ingrim Yard

Hailey MacDonald, Editor-in-Chief

It is normal to have dreams during sleep, whether it is a deep, night slumber or just a nap during the day. A dream is a series of thoughts and images that occur during sleep, and though humans experience them every night, most dreams are unable to be recalled. In fact, the dreams you are most likely to remember are those that occur right before you wake up, which is why they are often interrupted before they are able to conclude. It is not unusual to remember a dream when you wake up and then forget it as time goes on, but if you are wanting to remember your dreams better, there are many remedies to improve sleep memory including keeping a dream journal and constantly reminding yourself to remember as you drift off into sleep.

The actual scientific study of dreams is called oneirology, but psychologists that study dream interpretations theorize that these images and scenarios in your brain symbolize something in your life. Here is a list of common recurring dreams and what they could possibly mean for you. All descriptions are merely theories and are, in no way, completely factual.

1. Falling in love

* If you often dream of falling in love or your crush confessing their love for you, this could mean that you’re lonely and longing a relationship — intimate or not. It could also mean you are looking for happiness, or you often imagine yourself in a relationship that doesn’t exist.

2. Receiving test results

* Dreaming about tests and being evaluated may seem like a large stressor, but it actually stands for something greater. If you pass your test, this means you have recently completed something special and it is something to be proud of. On the other hand, if you dream about failing a big test, this indicates that you are setting the bar too high for yourself and you may need to reevaluate your current life choices.

3. Becoming famous

* Caution: If you dream about becoming famous, CODE RED! You are trying to control something that is beyond your reach. Reevaluate your situation and always do what is best for yourself.

4. Meeting a celebrity

* Celebrity dream sightings may not be as cool as you think. This indicates that you want to be someone that you are not, and that you wish to explore the qualities that make this person so special. It also may symbolize that power is within your reach.

5. Reuniting with someone no longer in your life

* There are many different ways to analyze a dream about an old friend. Some theories relate to the surplus of spiritual energy coming from the other person, meaning they could be thinking or talking about you in real life, which could represent their inner feelings of sorrow. Another theory is their presence in your dream symbolize your own personal guilt and the realization that you have wronged them.

6. Seeing a deceased relative

* Perhaps the most spooky and meaningful dream is being in touch with a family member who has passed. Research claims that about 70% of the time they are spiritual dreams, meaning you are really in touch with the family member, while the remaining 30% suggests it is a psychological fantasy. At times, relatives will appear when guilt is present, and they will come back to make their mark on the living. It is also common for them to come back to spread messages and give reassurance to the family. 

7. Brake failure while driving

* If you are driving a car and your brakes fail, this symbolizes the dreamer’s tendency to partake in self-destructive behavior. Be mindful of your actions and remember to always stay in control of your own life. You are going out of control somewhere, and your subconscious mind is letting you know.

8. Teeth falling out

* Insecurities and self-image issues are apparent through dreams relating to teeth, specifically when they fall out. Something in your life is causing you to question your self-worth as well as causing image anxieties, and changing your mindset will work to eliminate these nightmares.

9. Snakes

* Snakes are something that most people fear. When they appear in dreams, this means that there is something in your life that you are trying to avoid due to having to deal with the consequences afterward. There is something standing in the way of allowing you to sleep at night (literally).

10. Spiders

* If you find yourself distanced from a situation, whether it be with friends, family or social activities, you may find yourself dreaming about spiders. These creepy, crawly dreams indicate your aloof tendencies, which may not always be a bad thing.

11. Finding corpses

* To locate lifeless bodies symbolizes your inner feelings and emotions. It shows that there is something in your life missing, and you may feel empty, or “dead” inside. Something inside of you may have “died,” also, or it may symbolize a significant change in your life.

12. Fire

* Witnessing fire or burning may symbolize an intimate or passionate feeling igniting within your soul, and your subconscious is trying to tell you to act on it. However, it could also mean you’re “burned up,” or overworked, and you may be overwhelmed with ambition.

13. Being chased

* Dreaming about being chased means that you are literally running away from something in real life. It could be a person, new situation or event, but nevertheless, the person or thing you are running away from is important. This person’s involvement in the dream is no coincidence.

14. Falling

* One of the most common dreams, or even sensations, when drifting off into sleep is free falling through empty space without landing. This symbolizes many things: lack of control, mental instability, anxieties and pretty much anything that relates to your mind not being able to handle everything that is happening at once. If you experience this often, take a load off and try to sort through your mental space.

15. Drowning

* This is extremely common for people who are under a lot of pressure in real life. It could be physical or emotional, and could show that you are slowly losing control. In addition, it potentially indicates the presence of financial difficulties or that you’re being haunted by debt.

This list is only a fraction of the unique things you can dream about. For a complete list and more in-depth interpretations, check out www.dreammoods.com/dreamdictionary or www.dreamdictionary.org.